Back in 1996, I made the mistake of borrowing a pair of LS3/5As from work. Of course, it meant my old Musical Fidelity MC1s had to go!
At the time, the second-hand price of LS3/5As was around £400, which I felt to be a bit much. After a bit of investigation, I discovered The Emporium in Diss, Suffolk. They offered me a loan of a pair of Spendor's BC-1, which were going for just £100, and a pair of Rogers LS7s which were priced at £200.
It was an interesting week, as I still had the 3/5As, plus a pair of Spendor SA-1s that a good friend suggested as a cheaper alternative to the LS3/5A... My landlord was starting to seriously worry about me!
Almost from the moment I heard the LS7s, I knew they were exactly what I was looking for. I normally refrain from making quick judgements until after a few different recordings because first impressions are often misleading, but this time, I was right! The LS7s became my main loudspeakers, and remained so for around 5 years, until I switched to the BBC LS5/9.
Technical details The enclosure is made using classic BBC "thinwall" construction, but using cheaper MDF rather than birch plywood. The cabinet walls are 12mm and the baffle is 18mm. All walls except the baffle are damped with self-adhesive bitumen pads and lined with foam. The cabinet has a real-wood veneered which is stained gloss-black in my case. I'm not sure if that finish is original - it's possible they've been re-finished at some point The bass driver is retained with decent machine screws and captive nuts, and the port opening is flared to reduce port noises. The tweeter and plastic connection plate on the rear panel (holding the crossover PCB) are secured with wood screws. Gaskets are used on every removable component to ensure good air sealing.
Until I bought the ATCs, this was probably the biggest magnet I'd seen on a bass driver! It's nearly about twice the size of the LS2/14 used in the BBC LS5/9s.
As an aside, note the "Swisstone Electronics Ltd" markings on the casting - I was never 100% sure of the exact relationship between Rogers and Swisstone, but thanks to a unique and fascinating article detailing some of the history of Rogers written by Brian Pook (MD of Rogers 1976-1982), I now know for sure what happened. Basically, Rogers went bust, but the decision was made to relaunch the company - even attending the auction to buy back items that the bailiffs had only just taken away! They needed to be an actual company to do this, so bought "Swisstone Electronics" for this purpose. As far as I can tell, Swisstone was just a vehicle, set up previously and left, awaiting a buyer. I don't understand many aspects of business, so as unusual as this might seem to me, it's quite probable that this is a fairly common practice. Feedback welcome!